The Gender & LGBTQIA Center celebrated its second annual Pride Fest on Friday, Oct. 11. This year's Pride Fest was planned on the same day as National Coming Out Day, a day where members of the LGBTQIA communities celebrate coming out, pride and each other. 

The event brought together members of Elon’s LGBTQIA community and allies for food, fun and music. 

Sophomore Kate Lengyel, a student assistant at the GLC, came to celebrate LGBTQIA culture and identity. 

"We really put these events like these, like pride, to show students that they matter and that their identity is valid," Lengyel said. "That’s what pride is all about: celebrating the importance of queer people."

A snow cone tent and cornhole boards were set up outside of Lakeside Dining Hall. Iconic Plaza was decorated with colorful flags representing different sexualities and pride memorabilia such as pins and stickers. Attendees were also able to make their own bracelets and tie dye bandanas.

The plaza was also lined with the bisexual, pansexual and gay flags, representing a variety of identities within the community.

Sophomore Paige Wilson helped set up the festival. 

“I hope people gain a sense of positivity and happiness towards the LGBTQIA+ community,” Wilson said. “It’s a social event where everyone can come together as a community.”

The GLC looks to support individuals of all backgrounds and identities, with Pride Fest offering a safe space and promoting acceptance. 

“We’re here to support and help and be an advocate or a friend or anything. We’re just a community here,” Wilson said. 

The event also had an information table about LGBTQIA communities, that it hopes will connect students with helpful resources to learn about identity and belonging. 

The GLC will be celebrating International Pronouns Day next week on Wednesday, Oct. 16.